Jayhawks in Beijing: Russell Finishes 10th
Aug. 23, 2008
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Former University of Kansas standout Scott Russell’s incredible run to the Olympic men’s javelin finals ended early Saturday morning with a 10th-place finish in Beijing.
Russell, representing Canada, posted a top throw of 80.90 meters (265-05 ft.) in the finals. Norway’s Andreas Thorkildsen came away with the gold medal following an Olympic-record throw of 90.57 meters (297-01 ft.). Ainars Kovals of Latvia won the silver medal with a personal-best throw of 86.64 meters (284-03 ft.), and Finland’s Tero Pitkamaki took home the bronze after posting 86.16 meters (282-08 ft.).
Russell qualified for the finals Thursday by topping Group A with a throw of 80.42 meters (263-10 ft.). The Windsor, Ontario, native entered the finals with the sixth-best qualifying throw.
The former KU star was a member of the Jayhawk track and field squad from 1998-2002. He was a two-time NCAA Individual Champion, a six-time All-American and an eight-time conference champion while at KU.
Russell was named Jayhawk of the Year three times, in 1998, 1999 and 2002 for field competitors. He was an Academic All-American in 2002, and received the Dr. Robert E. Fredrick Senior Scholar Athlete of the Year award in 2002. He was a member of the Canadian World Championship team in 2001.
Thursday, Aug. 21
Former Kansas All-American Scott Russell’s goal coming into the Olympics was first and foremost to make the finals, and then see what happens from there. After a throw of 80.42 meters (263-10 ft.) on his first attempt in the men’s javelin qualification rounds in Beijing, Russell conquered the first step with authority.
The Windsor, Ontario, native did not have to attempt either of his second two throws, as his first distance held up to put him in the top spot of Group A. The second-best throw of the group belonged to Latvia’s Kovals Ainars, who posted 80.15 meters (262-11 ft.).
Russell, representing Canada, now moves on to the finals to face 11 other men. Of the 12 finalists, five of them had better throws than Russell in the qualification rounds. All of them came from Group B. However, only one of the finalists, Vadims Vasilevskis of Latvia, needed just a single throw to best Russell’s number.
The finals are set to begin Saturday at 6:10 a.m. CST. Russell will throw sixth in the rotation.
Anderson Olympic Feature to Air Thursday on KSHB (NBC 41 News)
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas sprinter Nickesha Anderson will be featured Aug. 21 at 6 p.m. CST on KSHB (NBC 41 News).
The story will discuss Anderson’s trip to Beijing for the Olympics, in which she was chosen as an alternate for the Jamaican women’s 4×100-meter relay team.
The Hanover, Jamaica, native was not chosen to compete in the first round of the 4×100-meter relay in Beijing. Jamaica qualified for the finals by placing first in its first round heat. The finals are scheduled for 8:15 a.m. CST on Friday. The runners are chosen right before each race, but at this point Anderson is not expected to compete in the finals.
Wednesday, Aug. 20
Olympic track and field is heating up, and former KU great Scott Russell is set to join in the action tonight in Beijing.
Russell, representing Canada, will compete in the qualification rounds of the men’s javelin at 8:10 p.m. CST. There are two groups of qualification tonight, with Russell going in Group A. Group B is set to begin at 9:40 p.m. CST.
Thirty-eight men will take part in the qualification rounds. The qualification standard to reach the finals is 82.50 meters (270-08 ft.), or at least the best 12 throws qualify if less than that reach the standard.
Russell was a member of the Jayhawk track and field squad from 1998-2002. He was a two-time NCAA Individual Champion, a six-time All-American and an eight-time conference champion while at KU.
The Windsor, Ontario, native was named Jayhawk of the Year three times, in 1998, 1999 and 2002 for field competitors. He was an Academic All-American in 2002, and received the Dr. Robert E. Fredrick Senior Scholar Athlete of the Year award in 2002. He was a member of the Canadian World Championship team in 2001.
Aarik Wilson, a volunteer assistant coach for the Jayhawks, competed earlier this week in the men’s triple jump. Wilson placed 16th in Group B of the qualification rounds with a jump of 15.97 meters (52-04 ft.). He did not qualify for the finals.